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HomeUncategorizedJury considers charges against Paul Kruse in Blue Bell criminal case

Jury considers charges against Paul Kruse in Blue Bell criminal case

After just five days of trial, United States v. Paul Cruise is now before a Texas jury.

Trial testimony in federal court in the Western District of Austin, Texas, came much sooner than expected before the Aug. 1 jury selection to begin the trial.

The Austin American-Statesman reported Wednesday that the prosecution made closing arguments. The court said the jury will resume deliberations today, meaning it could be over within two weeks. Jurors were warned of a possible 4-week trial when they were selected.

Cruise, 67, is the retired president of the iconic Blue Bell Creameries. He is on trial on federal felony charges of conspiracy and fraud for withholding some information about the 2015 listeriosis outbreak. Ten people fell ill and three died.

10 confirmed patients from four states – Arizona (1), Kansas (5), Oklahoma (1) and Texas (3), were Infected and Needed

During the more than 60-day crisis in 2015, Kruse finally recalled all Blue Bell products and closed its operations in Texas, Oklahoma and Alabama production facility.

But Cruise wasn’t moving fast enough for government prosecutors, who say it took too long to disclose the listeriosis problem from clients and the public.

Through a “retrospective review,” the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) found that isolates collected from Blue Bell ice cream matched onset dates from 2010 to 2014.

This is historical Pulsenet data for DNA “fingerprints”. Including three previous deaths from listeriosis in Kansas, all occurred before Blue Bell knew of the outbreak in early 2015.

Andy Kollman, Blue Bell’s quality control manager prior to 2015, testified that the company was experiencing an increase in bacteria. “We have to fix this or we’re in trouble,” he wrote in a 2014 email.

Coleman also told the jury that a sample of ice cream was shipped that did later return a positive test result for Listeria. He testified as a government witness, and the Justice Department agreed not to prosecute him.

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